1999 – Invasive variable milfoil found in the river near Stump Pond and by the eastern dam off Carlson’s point by Nick Stadtfeld and Lee Willson. Lee had read an article about variable milfoil in Lake Arrowhead leading them to start looking in Balch
2000 – One day dive by a commercial diver recommended by the Maine Department of Environmental Protection. The expensive day’s dive ($85/hr. including drivetime to/from Balch) results in 2-3 fifty gallon barrels
2001 – First volunteer dive using Nick’s whaler to transport the pulled milfoil to shore. Dive operations continued with volunteer divers, boat captains, and kayakers until 2012
2002 – relationship with New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (NH-DES) begins including the following actions:
◦ Courtesy Boat Inspections began. The $3 fee per boat has never been increased
◦ The herbicide diquat was applied to portions of the NH section of the lake
◦ A net donated by NH-DES was placed at the mouth of the river where is enters Stump Pond. The net continues to be used with each association taking a turn cleaning it throughout the summer months
2003 – BLIMP (Balch Lake Improvement Committee) was established and organized as a 501.c.3 non-profit corporation. Lee Willson is the first president with Nick Statdfelt as vice president.
2004 – NH-DES awarded $ 10,000 (up to 50 % reimbursement of actual costs) in grant money for herbicide treatment. NH-DES grants have continued every year since although the amount and percentage have decreased.
2004 – Michael Kattman becomes BLIMP’s treasurer, a position he still holds today
2010 – DASH boat was put into service with volunteer crew
2012 – DASH boat is staffed with professional paid divers. Steve Church, one of the original divers, has been on board every year since. Part of the success of this operation has been the generosity of camp owners allowing the divers a rent-free place to stay during DASH operations.
2012 – Don Pierce becomes BLIMP’s 2nd President
Wakefield began annual BLIMP funding of $3,500,
2013 – Acton began annual BLIMP funding of $5,000
2014 – Newfield began annual BLIMP funding of $2,000